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Treatment non-response and recurrence are the main sources of disease burden in major depressive disorder (MDD). However, little is known about its neurobiological mechanism concerning the brain network changes accompanying pharmacotherapy. The present study investigated the changes in the intrinsic brain networks during 6-month antidepressant treatment phase associated with the treatment response and recurrence in MDD.
Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging was acquired from untreated patients with MDD and healthy controls at baseline. The patients' depressive symptoms were monitored by using the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD). After 6 months of antidepressant treatment, patients were re-scanned and followed up every 6 months over 2 years. Traditional statistical analysis as well as machine learning approaches were conducted to investigate the longitudinal changes in macro-scale resting-state functional network connectivity (rsFNC) strength and micro-scale resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) associated with long-term treatment outcome in MDD.
Repeated measures of the general linear model demonstrated a significant difference in the default mode network (DMN) rsFNC change before and after the 6-month antidepressant treatment between remitters and non-remitters. The difference in the rsFNC change over the 6-month antidepressant treatment between recurring and stable MDD was also specific to DMN. Machine learning analysis results revealed that only the DMN rsFC change successfully distinguished non-remitters from the remitters at 6 months and recurring from stable MDD during the 2-year follow-up.
Our findings demonstrated that the intrinsic DMN connectivity could be a unique and important target for treatment and recurrence prevention in MDD.
Family functioning is associated with anxiety and depression. Perinatal depression and anxiety are common and influence the well-being of women, partners and their offspring. However, little is known about differences in associations between family functioning and mood symptoms in women and their partners in early pregnancy.
Investigating differences in associations between family functioning and anxious and depressive symptoms in women and their partners in early pregnancy.
In total, 171 woman–partner pairs were enrolled. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS), Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-Item scale (GAD-7) and Family Assessment Device (FAD) were performed. Correlation analysis and multiple linear regression analysis were applied to investigate the associations.
In pregnant women, all the subscale scores on the FAD were correlated with total scores on the EPDS and GAD-7 (all P < 0.05), whereas only the Roles subscale showed a predicting effect in regression models (P < 0.01). In partners, all the subscale scores on the FAD were related to total scores on the PHQ-9 (all P < 0.05), whereas only the Problem Solving subscale showed a predicting effect (P = 0.029).
Our findings indicate that family functioning in the domain of roles is associated with anxious and depressive symptoms in pregnant women and functioning in the domain of problem solving is associated with depressive symptoms in partners. Clinicians should pay special attention to roles and problem solving when assessing mood symptoms in pregnant women and their partners. This study also provides a basis for family health education in early pregnancy.
Understanding the patterns of treatment response is critical for the treatment of patients with schizophrenia; one way to achieve this is through using a longitudinal dynamic process study design.
This study aims to explore the response trajectory of antipsychotics and compare the treatment responses of seven different antipsychotics over 6 weeks in patients with schizoprenia (trial registration: Chinese Clinical Trials Registry Identifier: ChiCTR-TRC-10000934).
Data were collected from a multicentre, randomised open-label clinical trial. Patients were evaluated with the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) at baseline and follow-up at weeks 2, 4 and 6. Trajectory groups were classified by the method of k-means cluster modelling for longitudinal data. Trajectory analyses were also employed for the seven antipsychotic groups.
The early treatment response trajectories were classified into a high-trajectory group of better responders and a low-trajectory group of worse responders. The results of trajectory analysis showed differences compared with the classification method characterised by a 50% reduction in PANSS scores at week 6. A total of 349 patients were inconsistently grouped by the two methods, with a significant difference in the composition ratio of treatment response groups using these two methods (χ2 = 43.37, P < 0.001). There was no differential contribution of high- and low trajectories to different drugs (χ2 = 12.52, P = 0.051); olanzapine and risperidone, which had a larger proportion in the >50% reduction at week 6, performed better than aripiprazole, quetiapine, ziprasidone and perphenazine.
The trajectory analysis of treatment response to schizophrenia revealed two distinct trajectories. Comparing the treatment responses to different antipsychotics through longitudinal analysis may offer a new perspective for evaluating antipsychotics.
Losing one's only child is a major traumatic life event that may lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); however, the underlying mechanisms of its psychological consequences remain poorly understood. Here, we investigated subregional hippocampal functional connectivity (FC) networks based on resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging and the deoxyribonucleic acid methylation of the human glucocorticoid receptor gene (NR3C1) in adults who had lost their only child.
A total of 144 Han Chinese adults who had lost their only child (51 adults with PTSD and 93 non-PTSD adults [trauma-exposed controls]) and 50 controls without trauma exposure were included in this fMRI study (age: 40–67 years). FCs between hippocampal subdivisions (four regions in each hemisphere: cornu ammonis1 [CA1], CA2, CA3, and dentate gyrus [DG]) and methylation levels of the NR3C1 gene were compared among the three groups.
Trauma-exposed adults, regardless of PTSD diagnosis, had weaker positive FC between the left hippocampal CA1, left DG, and the posterior cingulate cortex, and weaker negative FC between the right CA1, right DG, and several frontal gyri, relative to healthy controls. Compared to non-PTSD adults, PTSD adults showed decreased negative FC between the right CA1 region and the right middle/inferior frontal gyri (MFG/IFG), and decreased negative FC between the right DG and the right superior frontal gyrus and left MFG. Both trauma-exposed groups showed lower methylation levels of the NR3C1 gene.
Adults who had lost their only child may experience disrupted hippocampal network connectivity and NR3C1 methylation status, regardless of whether they have developed PTSD.
Whether there are distinct subtypes of schizophrenia is an important issue to advance understanding and treatment of schizophrenia.
To understand and treat individuals with schizophrenia, the aim was to advance understanding of differences between individuals, whether there are discrete subtypes, and how fist-episode patients (FEP) may differ from multiple episode patients (MEP).
These issues were analysed in 687 FEP and 1880 MEP with schizophrenia using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale for (PANSS) schizophrenia before and after antipsychotic medication for 6 weeks.
The seven Negative Symptoms were correlated with each other and with P2 (conceptual disorganisation), G13 (disturbance of volition), and G7 (motor retardation). The main difference between individuals was in the cluster of seven negative symptoms, which had a continuous unimodal distribution. Medication decreased the PANSS scores for all the symptoms, which were similar in the FEP and MEP groups.
The negative symptoms are a major source of individual differences, and there are potential implications for treatment.
Objective: Functional imaging studies of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have shown an increased activation of posterior cingulate gyrus (PCG) of the brain. The aim of this study was to explore white matter integrity of PCG in PTSD subjects.
Methods: White matter integrity, as determined from fractional anisotropy (FA) value using diffusion tensor imaging, was assessed for PCG in subjects with and without PTSD from a severe mine accident. All subjects were also measured by the PTSD Checklist Civilian Version (PCL-C), the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), the logical memory subtest and the visual reproduction subtest of the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised in China. Sixteen PTSD subjects (8 subjects in each group) in the longitudinal study and 13 PTSD subjects as well as 14 non-PTSD controls in the cross-sectional case–control study were respectively recruited.
Results: In the longitudinal study, subjects with PTSD showed increased FA values in left PCG during the follow-up scan. In the cross-sectional study, FA values in bilateral PCG in PTSD subjects were higher than controls. Within the PTSD group (n = 13), FA values in the left PCG correlated positively with logical memory and negatively with PCL-C intrusion and STAI-trait (STAI-t) subscores. FA values in right PCG correlated negatively with STAI-t and STAI-state subscores.
Conclusion: These findings suggest that alterations of white matter integrity in PCG link to mnemonic and affective processing in PTSD over the long-term follow-up period.
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